FINANCIAL FITNESS . . . For Everybody
Are YOU financially fit? • Do you need a financial workout? • Do you worry about money? • Have you had a loss of income? • Would you like to better manage your finances?
Make a decision to become more financially fit • Small changes add up • Regular routine of financial fitness will provide muscle to… • Reduce debt • Save money • Spend wisely
Do you talk with your family about money? • Good communication adds to financial fitness • Discuss needs and wants • Available funds • Funding needs before wants
Couple communication • Discuss household finances • Location of • bank accounts • investments • important papers • Details of paying bills • Helpful in case of an emergency
What are your dreams? • Write dreams in the form of goals. • Short term goals • Long term goals • Be specific • Written goals are more likely to be accomplished • Road map for your financial future
Tracking your expenses • Write down every expenditure: • Groceries • Clothing • Meals out • Snacks, etc. • Are there any surprises?
Have you kicked a habit lately? • Do you smoke? • Eat lunch out every day? • Buy snacks from the vending machine? • The little extras in your life?
How much does a habit cost? • Lunch out 5 days a week at $5 a day - $25 • Lunch out $5 a day for a month - $100 • Lunch out at $5 a day for a year - $1200
Other spending habits • Excessive spending • Expensive vacations • New cars • Cell phones, beepers, caller ID • Premium cable TV • Shopping sprees
Spending more than you make • Credit obligations should be no more than 20% of take-home pay. • Credit reduces your future buying power < 20%
Credit Trap • Minimum monthly payments • Pay more than the minimum when possible • Avoid offers to skip payments • Sometimes takes years to re-pay
Credit check-up • Check your credit report • Record of your bill paying history • Used by lenders to determine credit risk • Check once a year for accuracy • If there are errors, contact the Credit Bureaus for corrections • Avoid credit repair clinics
Credit Reporting Bureaus • Equifax – www.equifax.com • Experian – www.experian.com • TransUnion – www.tuc.com
Shopping habits • Shop with a list • Avoid impulse buying • Do your homework before buying • Comparison shop for the best buy • Shop sales for needed items
Spending plan • List your monthly income • List your estimated expenses • Keep a record of how much is actually spent • Reallocate resources
Reserve cash • Reduces the stress of unexpected expenses. • 3 to 6 months of living expenses • Saving money adds to financial fitness, one day at a time
Pay yourself first • Is it tough to find money for saving? • Instead of saving at the end of the month, try saving at the beginning
Save and invest on autopilot • Get a certain amount direct deposited into a savings or investment account • Convenient • Rewarding • Good way to become a disciplined saver
What can you do to get your finances in shape? • Are you already practicing some of these financial fitness exercises? • Have you discovered other tips to add to your regular fitness routine? • Start by making a few changes at a time • Stay committed to the program
Financial Fitness is for Every Body! • Just imagine yourself… • Reducing the cellulite from your debt load • Increasing the muscle of your savings and investments • Getting your financial routine organized & easy to manage • The results will be rewarding! $
For more information please refer to the Financial Fitness newsletter on your mini-CD